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2009 full exam notes

Course Code
Mark Kingwell
Study Guide

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September 17 Plato's Republic
NB= especially important
Aristocratic Definition
1. Problems of ends- afterlife is uncertain, how do we gain knowledge of a proper end
2. knowledge of good
Socrates on moral psychology (NB: v. Plato)
virtue is a form of know-how knowledge
knowledge brings virtue
therefore, it is impossible to know the right thing and not do it
thus, for Socrates no akrasia (weakness of the will)- to know the right thing and wanting to do it:
N - 2ND
Y - 1ST
He then concludes there is Psychological conflict, Akrasia.
*Knowledgeable Aristocratic Definition
3. Harm- Socrates said to never harm
Enter Thrasymachus of Chaleedon, a Sophist- argue for hiers (lawyers) character
dialogue between Socrates and Thrasymachus who gets humiliated.
*Political Realist Definition
- person who believes power is everything
- justice is the advantage of the strong
5 false moves:
1. Error (P.339c)- are they ever mistaken of their advantage? yes, but can be right
2. Belief (340b-d)- they are acting on what they believe their advantage to be
3. Craft (341a)- is ruling a craft? yes, a ruler has strength and authority and also attends to something
4. Advanage (343d [NB: a variation of 2 above]- valuable things (e.g. castles, army) to help give you
5. Knowledge (350b) [NB: a variation of 3 above]- is there knowledge required for the power?
Bad Socratic arguments:
333e Boxer/Thief- Boxer: knows how to defend one self and offend, Thief: Socrates wants
352a soul-city analogy (soul-psyche-living part of person) fair legal code for the society.
369a E-Z reader suggestion- helps understanding
(353e) Psychological Definition
excellence virtue-> end (purpose, telos)
Great, But has this solved anything?
What kind of good is this?
pure good
internal instrumental good (knowleddge) = lead to more good things inside
external instrument good (medicine, excercise) = lead to more good things outside

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Why rule?
honour- status in the social order
Why should we be good? the disencentives are negative ways to deter people from crime.
fear of mortal punishment
fear of divine punishment [NB: 365e Cephalus/ Pascal
positive consequences
Regulative Ideal City (an u-toos, no place, or utopian thought-experiment)
what is the purpose of this thought-experiment of the ideal city?
to see some things more clearly
to sharpen and direct out aspirations
to criticisze or satirize existing conditions
Basic structure of the city
division of labour (369a ff)
restriction of luxuries (372) = makes city lazy, valuable for conflicts from othercities, and degenerates the
soul's integrity by wantng more.
readiness for war (373)
need for guardians (377)
-special education the poets disciplined change is dangerous (381aS) the "noble lie" (382c-d). They will
make the city more ideal.
How do you create a class-based society?
Myth of the Metals (414a) [NB: an instance of the noble lie]
ideology of social strata
mthhological backing = defend ideology using myths
naturalization (the "taken-for-granted") = accepted as natural (e.g. to honour parents)
Invisibility = ideology is invisible to the eye
mobility = the power structure is not fixed and allows social mobility
Glauccon's challenge: moral skepticisim
Gyges' ring: manipulate consequences injustice plus reputation for justice (361b)
Plato's Triparite Soul [NB vs. Socrates' simpler moral psychology]
faculty psychology
dynamic model
Consider: Leonitius and the corpses = He sees the corpses near the gate. He was tempted not to look
and to look and ends up looking.
(1) reason vs. (2) appetite (desire) (3) will (spirit)

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Freud: superego/ego/id
civil war (440e)
harmony (443d)
Understanding- Forms (intelligible)
Reason- Math/Science (intelligible)
September 29
Opinion- Objects (senses
Imagination- images senses)
"Difficulty of Education"
The Cave Story P. 514a
They see shadows casting on the wall and believed it to be real. It is like puppets being manipulated by
the demigod and people being deceived by it.Socrates believes that we are that way. In the story, the
philosopher goes back into the cave- messy world of politics and deceit of humans. they dont go with the
philosopher to the real world and the truth because they do not believe him.
Instabilities in the justification for the ideal city of Plato's republic:
382c (the noble lie)
414d (the myth of the metals)
459d (frequent deceit for citizens' own good)
Force: is necessary for order for justice
499b for both citizens and rulers
520a (for citizens)
473d,519e,539e (for rulers
Blank Slate: thought experiment of the ideal city needs for us to forget all over countries.
501a (the drawing board)
541a (everyone over 10 into the country for the ideal city to be justful)
Possible interpretations:
1. Plato is an idiot- ideal city was a dumb idea.
2. Plato is an idle trickster- take into consideration.
3. Plato is smarter than we think- he has a deliberate intention in mind when he argues for and against
the ideal city.
Principle of Clarity
Surface meaning (manifest content)
Hidden meaning (latent content)
REBUS= tangled meaning uses sound and image to hide meaning like bee leaf - be-lief
[NB Displacement condensation]
BOOK 8 & 9
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